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RPGWatch Forums » Games » The Witcher Games » The Witcher » Sex card criticism

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March 12th, 2009, 08:20
In another thread during the discussion of a nother game, the following came up:

Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
The witcher disappointed me immensely. I absolutely loathe the fact that it didnt matter what choices you make as long as you get to have sex with the girls to get those damn cards. It is like the killed off the moral consequences just for the sake of the the card mini game. After a while i couldnt take it any more.
Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
Huh? Ignore the card game - I certainly didn't bother with it. How did they affect everything else?
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I was referring to the witcher's card collecting sidequest thingy not drakensangs which i havent even started(dont know how to). The combat was okay in the witcher, but what compelled me to the witcher orginally was the story but it turns out that it was nothing but a facade for collecting those cards. As in the worst choice you make in the witcher is not choosing the options to get to sleeping with the girls.
Originally Posted by Dez View Post
The cards in witcher seems to be some kind of red blanket to many here. TW had the most orginal storyline and atmosphere I've experienced in years in a rpg game. Plus it was a really fun game to play. It isn't perfect, but saying that storyline was facade for collecting girl cards is quite absurd claim. Besides as far as I've understood sleeping with many women is a usual thing for Geralt even in books, so game continues this tradtion by offering you THE CHOISE. The cards may have been a slight miscalculation from CD projekt as they don't really add much to the atmosphere, but either way they aren't the sole focus of Witcher.

[…]
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
You didnt find that you got the best rewards with the route for card collecting? I've tried the various options and that s the impression i got.
…etc, and so it carried on for a while;
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March 12th, 2009, 08:27
Anyway, I'm trying to bring that discussion here, as I got involved in it, and I don't want to mess up the other thread with off-topic stuff.

Originally Posted by wolfing
But you don't *have* to. It's like in jRPGs. Sometimes there's the bad ending, the good ending, and the super-good-ending. For the super-good-ending you need to do crazy stuff that most of the times you can only do it by following a walkthrough. Since I don't follow walkthroughs when playing, 95% of the times I miss the 'super-good-ending', that doesn't mean I enjoyed the game any less (in fact, I'd say I enjoyed it more since I didn't have to bother with things like wasting 1 hour running in the desert to find a gold coin under a cactus).
Just forget about the cards and play the game as you would like it.
Posted by Damian Mahadevan
I save and try all the possible options. In the witcher the best endings lies with sleeping with the female path, i like to think. And the witcher would have made me think if the best options didnt head that way. Such a dissapointment because of the missed opportunity there. Anyway back to drakensang.
Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
Well, that's why we don't agree. You're busy figuring out what you didn't get, while I'm just playing the game as I see fit. Even then, I still don't understand - what rewards? I did romance Shani (seemed appropriate to me) - all I remember getting is a short video and a silly card. The "reward" there for me was being able to do something that seemed natural for my version of Geralt.
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
The "feel good" ending.

Originally Posted by RivianWitch View Post
Yeah, I really also don't understand what's with "the sex-cards give best ending " idea.
Whether you choose to collect the sex cards or not, has zero effect at all on the main story line of TW, they are just fun little minigames like brawling and playing dice, and in fact, they are even less crucial to the storyline or gameplay than brawling or paying dice, because the latter you can win some money with, and all you get with the sex thing, is the card.

Well, if you read the books, what you get to understand is that Geralt was an experiment, who not only went through the Witcher mutation that rendered him sterile, and created an aura that makes him irresistible to women (2 of the side-effects) but also retained his human feelings and emotions. So, in a way, the sex thing is part of Geralt's personal story, because he sits with the dilemma that he can never settle down and have children; but on the other hand, women are attracted to him, and he is also attracted to them, for physical and emotional reasons - that is why he tends to be so promiscuous.

Also, as far as choices are concerned - in TW your choices have consequences all the way to the end. I'm busy with my second playthrough, and I guarantee you that different choices makes the game experience quite different. I've also played the mini-adventures that came with the Enhanced Ed., and "The Price of Neutrality" has 4 different endings, all of them based on choices you make, so I really don't get the point about your choices not mattering?

Also, the TW is pretty non-linear in the sense of that there are many different ways in which to tackle and solve quests. You can play the game 3 or 4 times in a row, and do it differently every time.

Lastly I'd better not comment on the TW combat which I enjoyed very much, as I do tend to play quite a bit of action games as well, and from that perspective the combat was actually very nice, and quite a lot less hectic and rather more tactical than what most Action-RPG's offer up.

[…].
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March 12th, 2009, 08:35
The discussion continues:
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
Maybe i didnt get far in the game, but i got up to the vampires in town bit. But it seemed to me the game chastised you with a negative ending each time you choose the path that you didnt sleep with the girls. Am i wrong in this?
Originally Posted by RivianWitch View Post
I think you have totally the wrong end of the stick with a few things there.
Firstly, the quest you are referring to there, "Blue Eyes" is completely a side quest which you don't have to do at all. Secondly, the "good" ending there, comes not because of sleeping with the vampires, but with not killing them. You can actually still get a "good" ending with that quest, without actually sleeping with the vampires, as long as you choose the blue-eyed girl's side against her brother.
The worst ending is killing the vampires and letting the brother take the girl.

All that the game is trying to say there, is that what makes someone a monster, is not what he/she looks like on the outside but what he she is by nature, which is a strong theme in the books, and is also echoed when you have to decide whether to kill Vincent or not (a point you might not even have reached yet, seeing as you are still so early in the game). In fact, you are still so early in the game, that you have not really started seeing the consequences of your choices yet. I really can't see how you can make such sweeping statements about a game you have not played yet.

Let me use an earlier choice in the game as an example: the choice between whether you let Abigail live or not. This has NOTHING to do with whether you sleep with her or not. You can sleep with her and let her die, or not sleep with her and choose to have the mob kill her, or vice versa; - the one choice does not influence the other choice, so I totally disagree with your statement that the "sleeping with the woman choice" is ever the right or wrong choice.
The consequences do not come from whether you sleep with them or not - that aspect is totally irrelevant to the rest of the game, but from whether you choose to let people/"monsters" live or die.

The only "sex"/romance choice that has any bearing later on in the game, is whether you choose Triss or Shani, and that does not influence the outcome of the game, it only influences which one will act as your companion.
Originally Posted by Damian Mahadevan View Post
I didnt mean that i had to get the sex cards, rather that the path you take in trying to get the sex cards gives the best ending. Even if you choose not to get them. Is there even one ending where you get the better ending where you dont try to favour the girl?
Originally Posted by RivianWitch View Post
????? I don't understand what you are trying to say. The sex cards are totally seperate from the actual game - like a collectible. It's like making a stamp collection or a postcard collection. Personally, I just did them as a seperate series of minigames. Just like collecting the trophies in each chapter. Sure, you get experience and money for collecting the trophies, so should I then also say that "playing in such a way that you kill the monster you get a trophy from, gives the best outcome, even if you decide not to hand in the trophy"

I don't even think you earn any experience for getting the cards. And in fact, when I saw a list of the cards on a website somewhere, I saw that there was one or two that I had actually missed. The only effect that had on my game, is that I now feel there is a little gap in my collection. It does not affect the game that I did not even try for the card, because i did not know of it. Take the very first card with Triss. Many, many people were actually surprised to learn that they could have earned that card simply by saying to her that you would like to spend some extra time with her. But clicking on that option simply gives you an FMV and the card. Not a different outcome whatsoever.

After you have saved Vesna, you can say to her yes, I'd like to meet you , or you can choose to ignore her invitation. In fact, choosing to sleep with her, actually costs you - a bottle of wine goes down the drain. In actual fact, getting the cards costs you every single time except for one or two with Triss. So it's the worst outcome, actually, if you want the card. With the Gossip, you have to buy her a gift, even two, as she often rejects your first gift.
Shani and Triss both want an expensive ring, later in the game. With Blue Eyes, you have to pay her a lot of money. With the prostitutes, money , or flowers if you did the quest to save them from the thugs. With the Dryad, it's a Wolf pelt.

Ok, one or two of them don't cost you: Abigail and the half-elf, that I can think of right now.

So I'm sorry, but I still do not get your point? What I will agree with, is that the sex-card idea could be seen by some people as rather tasteless- if you view the cards the same way that a hunter would put a trophy against his wall. But I prefer to see it like a postcard would be a memento of a country you have visited, or photo's you put in a scrap book to remind you of people you once knew….

But the point remains; you could take the sex feature completely out of the game, and the actual quests and sidequests, will still remain exactly the same as they are now. Never ever does Geralt's decision to sleep with a girl or not, affect an actual outcome of a quest or of the main storyline.

Gee, I really think we should move this sub-discussion to the Witcher board.
Apologies Drakensang players. Next time I reply to a Witcher issue, I'll start a thread for it on the Witcher board. In fact, I'll do so now, and copy and paste this post there.
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March 12th, 2009, 09:07
What needs to be said has already been said as far as I'm concerned.

The combination of an OPTIONAL element in a ROLE PLAYING GAME makes any and all complaints about said element more or less moot (not counting discussions of the quality of the element). If you don't like the OPTIONAL element, then don't do it. Even if you miss out of some "über lewt" or a whole bunch of experience (which is not the case with TW sex cards), you can still CHOOSE not to do the optional elements if you feel that the character that you're ROLE PLAYING wouldn't do them.

If you can't recognize that choice when playing a CRPG then you quite frankly have no business playing such a game.

I apologize if I have offended anyone with such a statement but being able to recognize a "role playing choice" in a CRPG, even if it is just a pseudo choice, is a very fundamental requirement for the computerized version of role playing games.

"Chess in particular had always annoyed him. It was the dumb way the pawns went off and slaughtered their fellow pawns while the kings lounged about doing nothing that always got to him; if only the pawns united, maybe talked the rooks around, the whole board could've been a republic in a dozen moves." - Commander Vimes in Thud! by Terry Pratchett
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March 12th, 2009, 09:25
Sure, I can play the devils advocate. A RPG have limited offerings. You are offered what's in the game and nothing else. A game offers as much as the developer have resources to produce. Each feature comes with the cost of another feature.

In a such limited scenario, "take it or leave it" is not a choice between features, it's an "accept the feature or get nothing" where choosing "nothing" over "feature" really gives you nothing.

I could compare this with KOTOR that offered the choice to play Good/Evil. Since evil goes out for me, my choices was cut down severly compared to games like Planescape Torment where I really could make real choices, often about picking the least nasty between two evils.

Real choices in a RPG is about picking paths where each path should be valid, supported and presented as a feature.

Having said that I would just like to add that sex by itself have as little to do with morals as giving someone a hug or having dinner.

Mankind must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind. - John F Kennedy
An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind. - Mahatma Gandhi
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March 12th, 2009, 09:27
That's… bizarre. I thought the sex cards were a bit cheesy myself, but where does DM get the idea that you can only get the best rewards/the best ending by sleeping with all the ladies? AFAICT it doesn't affect the overall plot one bit, although of course the romance with Triss or Shani is a significant plot element. The game doesn't actually railroad you into sleeping with either of the good ladies, does it?
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March 12th, 2009, 11:50
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
I could compare this with KOTOR that offered the choice to play Good/Evil. Since evil goes out for me, my choices was cut down severly compared to games like Planescape Torment where I really could make real choices, often about picking the least nasty between two evils.
Ah, but then you've already made a choice by discarding the evil path. The evil path is indeed a valid path even if it doesn't sit well with you (nor with me). It may not seem to be as detailed in character interaction, nor as rewarding (emotionally or otherwise) as the good path but that doesn't make it any less valid. The whole discussion of the quality of the implementation of "evil" choices in CRPG's vs. "good" choices is not really relevant for this particular case, so I'll just let leave that one alone.

The fact of the matter is that you made a choice … and who said that the consequences for making a choice should only be felt inside the game? Why is choosing to forgo certain quests/parts of the game in favor of role playing the character not an acceptable consequence of a choice?

"Chess in particular had always annoyed him. It was the dumb way the pawns went off and slaughtered their fellow pawns while the kings lounged about doing nothing that always got to him; if only the pawns united, maybe talked the rooks around, the whole board could've been a republic in a dozen moves." - Commander Vimes in Thud! by Terry Pratchett
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March 12th, 2009, 13:16
Excuse the off-topic, but may I take the opportunity to say, fatBastard, that I just love your name. It's so… -honest.

Hehehe, also, when I get angry with you, nobody can censure me for saying: you fat Bastard!

I saw someone on another website who had a name like stupidRobot - now, was he easy to insult..


….but I don't want insult you, I've just been admiring your name for a while now, so I'm just finally remarking on it.
Last edited by RivianWitch; March 12th, 2009 at 13:17. Reason: typo
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March 12th, 2009, 15:26
Since we're on this topic… I'm playing the US version of The Wither EE. Am I missing out on certain graphical details?

I remember people making a big stink over how the original Witcher was censored over here. I'm not sure to what degree the EE version is censored, if any.
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March 12th, 2009, 15:56
I think you may miss out on some graphical details.

Here is the uncensored versions of the cards: http://witcher.wikia.com/wiki/Catego…s_—_Sex_cards

About the current topic, I can see both sides here. You don't gain anything in the game from these sex cards. In most you actually loose something, simply the payment to get to sleep with the ladies.
On the other hand, there is no feature for not getting these sex cards. Its like romances in game, though romances tends to be longer and can some times yield rewards. But if you fail a romance or choose to simply say no, then you don't get anything. Its a one time feature that requires you to play a certain way to achieve it.
I always feel when I complete romances that I play a phony chr, because I want to experience this extra feature and the only way to do that is to act a certain way towards the person. I don't get an alternative to the romance.

Its a bit like the sex cards for me. Its a feature but there is no alternative to them.
But, I don't have a problem going for the sex cards in TW since they don't seem to make me change my chr or act a certain way, since they seem so simple and quick to do.
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March 12th, 2009, 16:26
Originally Posted by Foss View Post
I think you may miss out on some graphical details.
Here is the uncensored versions of the cards: http://witcher.wikia.com/wiki/Catego…s_—_Sex_cards

Wtf? How do I get THOSE cards??

Also, anyone making a big stink about them is an idiot. If you don't like them, then just don't get them, it's thats simple!
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March 12th, 2009, 16:28
Yup. The naughty bits have been airbrushed out. So no nipples for you, bro — might be too much for you to handle. There's also a rather fetching dryad who's wearing nothing at all in the euro version but is sporting some nifty leafy bikinis in the American one.
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March 12th, 2009, 17:34
Well, here's my two cents:

I'm pretty sure you don't need to have sex with anyone in the game in order to get good endings or whatever. That said, this is one of the most immature games I've ever played. It was like some big joke and I laughed nearly every time my character did the nasty with some chick that looked suspiciously like every other woman in this game.

I'd say one of my favorites was the witch in the cave: I remember in the most broken sounding dialogue Geralt and her stumble into having sex, the whole while leading to it I could see Alvin and the kids in the background walking around, so basically we just banged in front of little kids, while peasants waited patiently outdoors to burn her. OK.

In the end I played through it. I even enjoyed the game, but I never took it seriously. I think it has something to do with the translations. Even in the EE I could barely get what was trying to be conveyed.
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March 12th, 2009, 17:53
Originally Posted by Thoth View Post
That said, this is one of the most immature games I've ever played.

Then I would have to question how many games you've actually played.
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March 12th, 2009, 18:57
*sigh* I don't get why this issue gets taken so seriously by some. To me it's simply a fun additional feature that can be avoided if you prefer. Why is no-one complaining about the drinking games? Drinking too much is bad for you. Or the fist-fighting. Brawling is bad manners and bad form.
Or the dice games. Gambling is sinful, dontcha know?
All the Fallout games had much worse than this, in any case. In Gothic and Fable you also get to sleep with prostitutes; etc, etc, etc.

No game is ever going to be perfect. Take the parts that you enjoy, and avoid the parts that you don't.


Anyway, thanks for the link to those cards on the Wiki, Foss, i can't believe I missed so many of them. Well, as I'm only mid-way through my second playthrough, i guess i can still catch a few.
Heh, and there's even a short little pointer on how to get them, along with the cards…
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March 12th, 2009, 18:57
This is still a topic ?

I found those cards somewhat juvenile, but they are just a really tiny fraction of that game. I didn't have the feeling they influenced a single thing. I took those scenes as a way to keep a bit closer to the feel of the book, if you as the player want. If anything, I noticed how little influence personal or sex relationships have on the story. They are part of Geralt's life, but mostly unimportant. Somehow, these intermezzos even stressed Geralt's loneliness.

But I have honestly no idea whatsoever how you can exalt this little side aspect to a major point of the game.
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March 12th, 2009, 19:39
We had a lot of discussion about the cards when the game first came out—I agree and said at the time it was a silly tempest in a teapot compared to the real excellence of the game. There is absolutely no need to collect the cards if you're not into it.

My only gripe was there was no card for Geralt.

@JDR: You can get them here in the Import version of the game—they used to have it on gogamer.

And a late welcome to the boards, RivianWitch.

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March 12th, 2009, 19:40
Originally Posted by Turjan View Post
This is still a topic ?

Somehow, these intermezzos even stressed Geralt's loneliness.

But I have honestly no idea whatsoever how you can exalt this little side aspect to a major point of the game.
Yup. Exactly.

And a late welcome to the boards, RivianWitch.
Oh, thank you. You might notice I actually joined the site long, long ago, but I seem to remember there wasn't too much going on back then?
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March 12th, 2009, 21:08
Originally Posted by magerette View Post
@JDR: You can get them here in the Import version of the game—they used to have it on gogamer.

I already downloaded the uncensored files, thanks.
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March 13th, 2009, 00:36
I should have left the sex cards out of the discussion completely. Lets just say i dont believe that siding with the girls should always give you the best ending. It makes your choices one dimensional.
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